Letters this morning to photographers. First is someone whom i paid for an hour of consulting in 2011. Next is to a photographer i will see at the seaweed workshop.
I am amazed at how long it's been since you published your composition book. The years just slipped by (and the depression was pretty dark for a while). I will understand if this work has been written off as unclaimed, but i think i am finally ready for a photo review.
As Christine has nudged me to arrange the review, i've thought about what i wanted to know. And what i'm curious about is, what am i missing? I haven't consciously worked to develop a style, but when i look at some landscape work i realize i am not interested in HDR (preferring to expose to the right and postprocess) or some of (what seems to me) hyper color manipulation. (I know i'm teetering on an edge: am i a naturalist who photographs or a photographer of the natural world?)
What i'd like is first your impression of whether i over-use any compositional or processing construct and miss using another. I struggle with near-far and know i need to get that skill (conscious attempt thwarted by lens flare and the fact i didn't have grad filter to allow more sky: https://www.flickr.com/photos/elainegreycats/13384937425/ ), and i've bought a set of (probably too cheap) grad filters to improve dynamic range.
The other question is what's next in developing myself as a photographer? In mid May i'm going to study seaweed in a Jepson herbarium (Berkeley) workshop: this is investing in my naturalist side. I almost contributed to a Yosemite contest which led to one round of photo printing. I see you and many other professional photographers making a living with sidelines of teaching: i know when i leave software development i will want to focus more on naturalist sidelines (documenting different species, guides to flora, etc). But what does one do past posting to Flickr? Are contests next? Is Viewbug a scam? (I'm pretty sure it is just farming photographers for advertising.) Should i be networking in social media? Going to classes or workshops? Trying to find stock photo outlets? Selling notecards and iPhone skins?
Flickr stream is at https://www.flickr.com/photos/elainegreycats/page1/
Getting together for coffee or via a skype/google chat will be just fine, if the offer for a photo review is still on.
Thanks for your time,
I'm a reader of your recent seaweed book and will be at the seaweed workshop at Point Arena, too. I was wondering if you might have time to talk about how you got into publishing your photos as books and provide some advice to me over one of our meals during the workshop.
If you have the time, you can check out a sample of my writing in a casual style and my photography at the following links.
Essay: https://medium.com/joy-in-ecological-diversity/e61f73455186 (the crops from the photos i took of the forget-me-not are not my best work, and are barely acceptable for a random web article)
Also, do you have any interest in carpooling? I am planning to leave just after morning rush hour (or maybe before) on Thursday so as to have time exploring the coast around Point Arena (more wildflowers than wet things). I haven't checked iNaturalist or Calflora for particular blooming hotspots yet, but my travel notes are accumulating at https://www.evernote.com/shard/s6/sh/bd5e7652-3e91-4218-b4be-8650aa2d9168/de5dbfb792f1a995311a9302ef172994 I'm planning on returning the same route, although taking 1 back is very very tempting.
See you in a week!